Dawson may wear Cubs hat for speech
Andre Dawson said he was disappointed the Hall of Fame decided his plaque in Cooperstown, N.Y., will feature a Montreal Expos hat, but Dawson plans to acknowledge Chicago Cubs fans during his induction speech in July.
Dawson, who spent the first 10 seasons of his career in Montreal, wanted his plaque to feature a Cubs hat. He played six seasons with the Cubs, beginning with his MVP year in 1987.
"I know the difference in the 10 to six years probably was something of a consideration on their part," Dawson said on "The Waddle & Silvy Show" on ESPN 1000. "But I tried to explain, perhaps, the impact of what really catapulted me to Hall of Fame status, and pretty much what my preference was.
"But I think their decision had been made. It was a little gut-wrenching for me to hear that, but it's their decision, and I respect that, and from there I move on."
Dawson was hoping his preference would carry a little more weight, but the fact the Expos no longer exist might have made an impact on the Hall. The organization left Montreal after the 2004 season and moved to Washington, D.C., becoming the Nationals.
The Baseball Hall of Fame said it considers the wishes of an inductee but that the choice of the logo on each plaque must be emblematic of where the player made his greatest impact.
"The Hall clearly stated their major concern is the history of the game, and that's what really played into their decision," Dawson said. "I'm disappointed. I can probably say that, because Chicago was my preference.
"I received a letter prior to the voting, and it was my understanding they would make the determination [after] sitting down and discussing it ... And I just thought it would carry a little more weight than it did."
While the plaque will feature an Expos logo, the Baseball Hall of Fame said the Cubs, Red Sox and Marlins will also be listed as other teams that Dawson played for.
With Montreal, Dawson won a Rookie of the Year award in 1977 and hit 225 of his 438 career home runs. But it was in Chicago where he became a household name, making it to the All-Star team in five of his six seasons there.
Dawson was asked if he might put on a Cubs hat during his induction speech.
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"To be honest with you, I thought about that," he said. "It was a tough night for me sleeping [Tuesday]. I slept better the night before the announcement than I did after I got the decision last night, as odd as that might sound.
"I don't want to do anything that might be an embarrassment to someone or show someone up, that's not my character. But there will be some way I will try to acknowledge the Cubs fans to show just how important they were to me. I did think about at some point in time during the speech putting a Cubs cap on, but I don't know if that's appropriate."
Dawson also was asked if he's heard from Chicago's most famous baseball fan.
"I haven't heard from [President] Obama, probably because he's a White Sox fan," Dawson said.
Information from Reuters was used in this report.
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